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Quickly growing to be one of football’s greatest central midfielders, Yaya Touré has an obvious abundance of talent.

He combines power and finesse making him seem almost effortless in everything he does.

Player in focus: Yaya TouréBut where did it all start for Yaya? He began his football for Académie de Sol Beni, the reserve team for a club called ASEC Mimosas, based in the capital city in the Ivory Coast. He player there for 5 years before making the switch to European football, playing for Beveren, Metalurh Donetsk and Olympiacos. He played a total of 129 games scoring 9 goals. As the 2006 World Cup came along, AS Monaco had reportedly been interested in Yaya’s services. His performances helped to sway their decision and he was quickly installed into the Monaco side. However his relationship with his manager, László Bölöni, was poor with Touré feeling as though he was being played out of position. Bölöni was sacked soon after meaning that Yaya was played in his preferred position of midfield. From here he scored 5 goals in the second half of the season to help his team out of a relegation battle, showcasing his talent to the rest of Europe.


With Touré playing so well in his new found position, it was only logical to assume that an even bigger club would snap him up quickly. His destination this time? Barcelona. The Camp Nou, a place where he had to impress. He joined for €10 million (£6.7 million), which looking at him how was a very good deal. But for a player at the beginning of their journey to the top that sum was reasonable. His performances switched between outstanding and average in his 3 years at the club. His place was under continued jeopardy however with Pep Guardiola favouring the controversial Sergio Busquets in the midfield role. A season later it was to be goodbye to the Camp Nou with Barcelona confirming that Touré was allowed to leave in the summer. Yaya’s final switch to date came in the form of a move to the Etihad Stadium where he would join the exciting new project at Manchester City.

He began well with Touré playing 49 times in his first season, scoring 10 goals along the way. His position began to change slightly, moving to a more attacking central midfield role. As the season went on as the City manager Roberto Mancini began to see the attacking threat that Touré possessed. It would be here that he has played to this day. In the following two season Yaya continued to impress and visibly grew as a player, making a total of 84 appearances in all competitions. He had firmly established himself in the midfield alongside David Silva and anytime Touré was absent it was clear for all to see. So how has this season begun for the Ivorian? Well in my opinion he seems to be in the form of his life, already scoring 7 goals in the 14 games he has played. If anything his effortless ability to glide with the ball only seems to have improved, bushing players aside as if they aren’t even there. What’s stuck in my mind about him so far this season however is his astonishing ability with a dead ball.

Power and pace

I remember watching a Manchester City game against Hull earlier in the season in which he hit a free kick so sweetly that it nestled into the top corner and left McGregor helpless. He has more recently hit a free kick similar to his one against Hull into the top corner showing Premier League fans exactly what he can do. So far this campaign he has played a total of 900 minutes showing just how much of a regular he is to the side. What makes him such a great player is that he has so much more to his game than his goals and ability to take players on. For example, he is great in the air, towering above opposition players with his huge 6ft 4in frame. One of my favourite things about Yaya is his ability to play that final ball or that crucial pass that can win his side the game in an instant. I would go as far as describing him as a majestic player with the ball at his feet and he has certainly earned his place in my fantasy football side for this season.

With the World Cup coming up and Ivory Coast on the brink of qualification there couldn’t have been a better time for Touré to play the best football of his life and cement his place in that central midfield spot. I look forward to watching him for the rest of the season where he will surely give fans a few more memorable moments along the way, showing everyone why he is regarded as one of the best midfielders in the world.

Originally published at fourfourtweet.co.uk

Post written by Thomas Wagstaff (@ThomassWagstaff) for FourFourTweet
Blog: fourfourtweet.co.uk, Twitter: @FourFourTweet

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